Depression affects around 350 million worldwide. It is a difficult illness to manage, as symptoms can include lack of energy, lack of motivation, trouble concentrating, lack of interest and pleasure in activities that used to be enjoyable.
About 16 million U.S. adults had at least one major depressive episode in 2012. That made up approximately 6.9% of all adults in the country. While both men and women suffer from depression, women are 70% more likely than men to experience depression in their lifetime. It affects the youth as well: 11% of adolescents have a depressive disorder by the age of 18.
Unfortunately, it is often difficult for those with depression or other mental illnesses to reach out for help and support. Sometimes, even walking into that first mental health clinic is difficult. According to one statistic, 50% of people suffering from depression do not seek treatment for the mental illness.
There are many factors that influence depression. They include, environment, such as difficult living situation, external factors such as a job that is stressful, events such as a job loss or passing away of a loved one, and even the turning of the seasons, as winter is known to influence depression, such as the euphemism “winter blues.”
One environmental factor that can influence depression is marital strife or struggle. Living with someone who is a long term romantic partner can lead to arguments, disagreements, festering feelings of resentment, and even infidelity. These are all difficult to manage or find a solution for, but fortunately and psychotherapists are fitting the bill.
A psychotherapist is an individual trained often in psychology who is there to help alleviate the symptoms of mental illness or help with a specific niche, such as the family therapist or marriage counselor. A psychotherapist generally is accredited within their state and may belong to a professional organization.
More and more therapists are becoming, whether fully as in their entire practice, or as part of their treatment tools, marriage and family therapists. Marriage and family therapists can help couples and families resolve their issues and grow closer to their partner or other family members.
Marriage and family therapist sessions often involve both partners in a relationship and the members of the family. They often involve communication exercises or different ways family members can relate to each other, while resolving some past wounds or dealing with resentment.
Various organizations have researched the effectiveness of marriage and family therapy and come up with some statistics:
- According to the Chicago Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy, 50% of couples who underwent therapy recovered by the end of treatment, while 70% fully recovered within three months after treatment ended.
- If you turn to a marriage or family therapist, you will spend 20-40% less than if you were with a psychotherapist or psychiatrist.
- 93% of patients say they had more effective tools for dealing with their problems, while also showing improved ability to work and improved physical health.